• Aug 8, 2007
To reduce the number of speed-related accidents and appease the zealous pedestrian council in the Australian state of Victoria, government authorities have blindingly placed a ban on all forced-induction gasoline engines and V8s (or larger), deeming them unsafe for new and inexperienced drivers.

Unfortunately, the governmental outfit known as VicRoads has inadvertantly banned some of the safest cars on the market such as Mercedes' 160hp C200 Kompressor but makes it perfectly legal for inexperienced drivers to get behind the wheel of the Aussie market's 250hp plus naturally aspirated six-cylinder sedans. Even Saab's 1.8T engine with an earth-shattering 147hp is rated as a 'high-powered' engine by the state government, while Ford's 255hp 4.0L straight-six is fine.

You'd think that common sense would soon step in and force the lawmakers to make some adjustments to the banned list, but you'd be wrong. Despite the outcry from carmakers such as Mercedes-Benz, Audi and Saab, which sell a range of low-powered forced-induction models, ministers still see all force-fed engines as high-powered and are not about to step down from the standpoint.

[Source: Drive]
While we agree that putting provisional drivers behind the wheel of a performance car usually leads to trouble, this type of blanket ban on all super and turbo chargers is plain wrong. A number of companies are using these technologies to improve fuel economy and we can only expect to see their use increase, not decrease.

You can take a look at all the restrictions for new provisional drivers here. Essentially, all cars with 8-cylinders or more are banned, as well as all turbo and superchargers and some high-power V6 models. Some exceptions apply to Smart cars and turbo-diesel models.


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  • 48 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      When I read this, I was seriously hoping that the source was going to be "The Onion." No such luck.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Just another fine example of how people without common sense cannot legislate common sense into the world.
      • 7 Years Ago
      This kind of moronic legislation is hampering the process of purging idiots out of the gene pool. In the past really dumb and irresponsible people would find ways to kill themselves, thus minimizing their opportunities to breed more dumb and irresponsible people.
      • 7 Years Ago
      That law makes 0 sense. Instead, make young drivers actually pay attention. Where I live, so many of them text while driving, etc. As a relatively responsible young driver, the speed limit might not always be followed, but I feel safer doing 10 over paying attention that 2 over texting my girlfriend and trying to change the radio station. However, I get pulled over and fined 200 dollars while the girl next to me at the stoplight who pays no attention to what is going on around her and repeatedly misses the green light is considered responsible.
      • 7 Years Ago
      What happened to the land of tasty beer, tasty women, and that mad max mentality that one endeared aussies to the world? Socialist losers now.
      • 7 Years Ago
      @ lintsniffer

      How the hell did you get your license without taking the test?
        • 7 Years Ago
        license tests are jokes. When i took mine the guy got into the car turned the air conditioning on his side to 60 then since the fan was too loud adjusted that, then played with the electric seat and ends up taking points off because im too worried that if i drive in a remotely aggressive manner i will hear a loud noise and see that the fat guy has destroyed my passenger seat...
        • 7 Years Ago
        I was given a CD for learning at home. I didn't have to turn in proof that I had done it, and there was no test, driving or written, I had to complete. I just had to turn in a log of when I drove with a parent and what I did. I did go with my dad, but I didn't record it so I just made some dates up on the form. The only other thing I needed was a form from my school saying I was enrolled and wasn't a dropout.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Lucky bastards. Any idea if it counts in Canada?
        • 7 Years Ago
        More than likely through drivers ed.

        I know when I took it when I turned 15/16, if you got a good grade in the class you were exempt from the state driving test. Only had to take the written test.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Hilarious. So to put it in terms that are close to home... I have a 1990 VW Corrado that has far more money than I care to track dumped into engine upgrades. It would be illegal, because it has a supercharger on it. Two years later, VW upgraded the car with their excellent VR6, giving it more horsepower, more torque, more performance, and natural aspiration. Bone stock, it had only slightly less power than my modified four-banger, but due to extra weight up front, apparently it doesn't handle quite as well. So... at ~200hp with worse handling, that would be perfectly fine, but at ~160hp and better-handling, the 4-banger would be Das Ist Verboten.

      Awesome. Almost as sensible as Ontario banning modified cars altogether, and passing a law allowing modified cars to be summarily siezed if they appear that they could be modified for street racing. Not if they WERE street racing, mind you, but if they COULD BE street racing. In other words, that Veyron? Perfectly fine. That 140hp Civic with a fart-can muffler? Too dangerous and therefore illegal.

      Common sense is not so common anymore.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Please delete this post - I fear that some California bureaucrat will read it and go "Hey, that's a good idea!". 48 hours later:

      Governor Schwarzenegger signed the "No cars over 100 horsepower law" today...
        • 7 Years Ago
        LOL. I was thinking the same thing, but I wouldn't think it as impossible to happen here in California.
        • 7 Years Ago
        @lintsniffer

        throwing a number out as example.

        also throwing the idea out there.

        not necessarily partial to it myself but also dont want to be on the same road as the little p***k that has an M3 and trying to show off the day he gets his license.

        Always the argument of trying to legislate common sense. lots of people dont have it, and how do you protect others from them. I'd rather educate the world.

        "I say live and let live. Anyone who doesnt agree, take em out and shoot the motherf****r" - George Carlin
        • 7 Years Ago
        Don't say stuff like that, man, because it's only gonna encourage them to do it. Although we probably should have a restriction on drugged-out celebu-trash chicks and whether they should be restricted to the passenger seat.
        • 7 Years Ago
        that would be more in line with what they are trying to accomplish...

        I'd rather see hp rating tied to the experience of the driver. they already have that from 16-18, they cant have friends in the car or curfews. Just add they cant drive a vehicle over 140hp.

        keeps Mustang GTs and STi's and Evos out of inexperienced hands.

        That may be a level of government I dont want to see personally but just to provide multiple sides of the argument.
          • 7 Years Ago
          Power-to-weight ratio would be a better metric than horsepower. A 4-cylinder Camry is somewhere around 20:1.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Not sure if this article made it clear, but this is not a blanket ban on turbochargers for all drivers, just for those holding a provisional license, which new drivers must have for a minimum 3 years before upgrading to a full license. Maybe I'm being captain obvious, but the post didn't really make that clear. Still a retarded law though.
      • 7 Years Ago
      if you are going to punish the young by keeping them around 150HP you should punish the old also, when you get about 60 years old, the amount of HP you can handle starts to drop. I would say when you hit 70, you should be limited to about 150HP.
      • 7 Years Ago
      retarded.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Yes these laws are crap, but then again most politicians aren't car enthusiasts. I mean most don't even do their own driving, they have tax-payer funded drivers >:(

      The problem is that the large majority of people aren't interested in cars, can't drive very well, and don't really care. *They* will see this as a good thing because "all young people are hoons" and anything that is modified must be used for street racing... and they are probably on drugs... and part of a gang... etc etc

      *sigh*
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